Federal agencies Recordkeeping

OSHA hosts Twitter chat to clarify new reporting requirements

OSHA Twitter chat highlights

Washington – In OSHA’s first-ever Twitter chat, the agency sought to clarify a variety of aspects regarding its new reporting requirements, which go into effect Jan. 1.

The rule requires all employers to report directly to OSHA any incident in which a worker is killed or hospitalized, suffers an amputation, or loses an eye. OSHA fielded several questions from stakeholders about the rule during the hour-long Twitter chat on Dec. 11, using the hashtag “#Reporting2015.”

Employers will be able to report incidents via the phone and speak with an OSHA representative, or online at www.osha.gov, in which they will receive an email confirmation of their report.

Inpatient hospitalizations are only reportable if they occur within 24 hours of the work-related incident, OSHA said. The hospital or the clinic determines whether or not the worker was formally admitted as an in-patient.

The agency’s enforcement policy is still being finalized, OSHA said, but the agency stressed that employers must comply with the new requirements beginning Jan. 1. Previously, employers only had to report work-related deaths and hospitalizations of three or more workers. OSHA changed its reporting requirements because hospitalizations and losses of an eye are “significant events” that may indicate the existence of serious hazards at worksites, the agency said.

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